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Student Life

Each day at Mater Dei Academy has seven learning periods of either 35 or 40 minutes each. Class sizes are small and teachers take the time and interest in each individual student.  The day begins and ends with prayer. Each week the students partake in the Socratic Seminar, an important learning opportunity in classical education. 

Student Life


Mater Dei Academy provides a comprehensive six-year programme in the classical tradition, 
culminating in the Irish Leaving Certificate examination. 


Our four year junior cycle provides a provides a comprehensive and systematic introduction to liberal education in the classical tradition built on the three pillars of Grammar, Logic, and Rhetoric. First year students study...

  • Gaeilge

  • English

  • Mathematics

  • Theology

  • Philosophy

  • Art

  • Music

  • History

  • Science (geology & astronomy) 

  • Latin

  • Physical Education

French is introduced in Year 2.

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How We Learn

At Mater Dei Academy, we emphasise classical learning because we want our students to read well, speak well, and think well. We learn in this way to enable our students to think critically and deeply about important questions. But we also do it because Truth and Beauty are good in themselves and desirable for their own sake.


Our experienced teachers introduce our students into the wisdom of two thousand years of Catholic thought, history, culture, and arts, helping each student to understand themselves and our world in the light of the Truth. Education in this deep and comprehensive sense extends beyond the classroom and is more than just the acquisition of skills. Education at Mater Dei Academy is not just training for work but learning for life. For this reason, we look to involve families ever more deeply in the life of the Academy and in the education of their children. Read more...

How we learn


Junior Cycle

Our students are assessed to international standards of excellence across the following core subjects:

Students are independently assessed in the additional subjects of Philosophy, Theology and Physical Education. 

Senior Cycle

At the end of sixth year, students will take the Leaving Certificate from the following subjects: 

  • Gaeilge 

  • English

  • Mathematics

  • Applied Mathematics

  • French

  • Latin or Classical Studies

  • Physics

  • Chemistry

  • Biology

  • History

  • Art

  • Music

  • Religious Education

Additional examination subjects including may be offered subject to demand where the Academy will look to exploit flexible learning options, peer support and distance learning to enable each student to study subjects most suited to their aptitudes and interests.

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Timetables and Calendar

Our school day is 8.50am to 3pm Monday-Friday. Each day begins and ends with community prayer. Our full calendar is available here.


Uniforms are available from Buckleys on Shandon Street, Cork.



See our full booklist.


International Students


Mater Dei Academy is delighted to welcome a limited number of international students to Cork in 2022/23. Small group teaching groups dedicated to English tuition. 

Mater Dei Academy carefully selects friendly local Catholic families who are happy to welcome your child into their homes. Parents of international students should email to learn more. 

International Students
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